In 2014, a renewed EU Fluorinated Greenhouse Gases Regulation No 517/2014 (or “F-Gas Regulation”) was adopted to reduce fluorinated gas emissions by two-thirds by 2030, as compared with 2014 levels. This reduction supports EU obligations under the 2016 United Nations Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (1987). While the phase-down is ongoing, replacing fluorinated gases with climate-friendly alternatives is becoming difficult. Safety standards drastically limit the use of climate-friendly alternatives such as natural refrigerants because of their flammable properties, without reflecting technological developments able to mitigate the risks. ECOS works at both European and international level to reduce the barriers posed by standards to the uptake of natural refrigerants, thus improving the environmental performance of the heating and cooling sector.
ECOS has called on the European Commission to take a bolder stance in the upcoming revision of the F-Gas Regulation and accelerate the phase-down of highly polluting fluorinated gases.
Recent research within the LIFE FRONT project, with active participation from ECOS, shows that introducing higher ceilings to the use of climate-friendly refrigerating agents is safe.
By 2050, two thirds of the world’s households could have an air conditioner due to the effects of global warming. According to the International Energy Agency, the total number of air conditioners is expected to grow from 1.6 to 5.6 billion globally. The need to switch to climate-friendly refrigerants has never been so great!